Where is my nearest Frazzled Cafe and how do I find out about future launches?
We currently have Frazzled Cafes running regularly in Beverley (near Hull), Brighton, Cambridge, Handforth Dean (near Manchester), Leeds, Liverpool, London, Newcastle, Norwich and Wolstanton (near Stoke).
Information and launch dates for each new location will be emailed to our mailing list as they are confirmed, you can sign up here to receive updates and invitations to existing meetings or tell us where you would like us to launch next. The information will also be made available on our website.
We will be releasing dates for our next wave of launches shortly and with the continued support of Marks & Spencer we will continue to add further locations throughout 2018.
Can I just turn up to a Frazzled Cafe meeting?
Is Frazzled Cafe a cafe that hosts social meetings?
Frazzled Cafe meetings are limited in number to ensure that everyone who attends is able to speak if they wish to. It is for this reason that we require people to pre-register attendance. Invitations to Frazzled Cafe meetings are currently sent out by email to members on our mailing list for each location and it is also possible to book directly via the button on our homepage. Whilst places are allocated on a first-come basis, we will always endeavour to ensure someone who has attended previously is able to attend again and we also operate a wait list should places become free last minute.
Please be aware that there is a minimum age requirement of 18 years to be able to attend.
We appreciate that our name may be a bit confusing but no, we do not operate a cafe. We are a peer support group that hold our meetings in the cafe area of select M&S stores (and sometimes in their community rooms if available) but usually when the cafe is already closed, or about to close, so that it can be a private space.
We hope that everyone attending a Frazzled Cafe meeting will find it a welcoming and friendly atmosphere and there are opportunities for people to socialise more generally before we start and in the break, but Frazzled Cafe meetings differ from traditional social groups/coffee meetings. They are intended to provide opportunity for people who are feeling frazzled to share how they are feeling in a safe and understanding environment, and therefore follow a structure that we have found helps give everyone a chance to participate.
Is Frazzled Cafe about mindfulnes?
We recognise that many people find mindfulness to be a useful tool in helping to de-frazzle – in fact our founder and patron Ruby Wax has written a pretty awesome book about it (further information can be found here) however, it is not the focus of Frazzled Cafe meetings. We open and close our meetings with brief mindfulness exercises to help everyone to be ‘present’ in the room and it gives people a taster if they want to try it, but that's about it.
If you would like to learn more about mindfulness we can recommend taking a look here: OxfordMindfulness.org
Is Frazzled Cafe just for the 1 in 4 who suffer from diagnosed mental illness?
Absolutely not. Frazzled Cafe is for anyone feeling frazzled and overwhelmed by the stresses of modern life. Frazzled Cafe meetings provide a ‘talk-in’ place where people who are feeling frazzled can meet on a fortnightly basis to talk and share their personal stories in a safe, anonymous and non-judgmental environment - a place where it's ok to not be ok
Not sure it’s for you? Come along and find out. Feedback indicates that most people find benefit in attending regularly but there is no obligation on you to commit to doing so.
Frazzled Cafe is not therapy and may not be suitable if you are currently suffering from severe mental health problems.
I want to help with Frazzled Cafe – what can I do?
If you are interested in volunteering as a Frazzled Cafe facilitator you can find out more about the role and apply here. We will be prioritising recruitment initially for those locations in our current launch schedule.
We are grateful for all levels of voluntary support and will over time be placing details on our website of other specific roles we are recruiting for. If there is something that you think you can help with, please get in touch.
Can I open a Frazzled Cafe in my area?
Frazzled Cafe meetings are centrally coordinated and hosted in select Marks & Spencer stores. For logistical and oversight purposes they are not currently held in independent venues and we do not franchise them out. If you would like to see a Frazzled Cafe launch in your area please let us know by signing up and telling us where. If there is sufficient demand we will do our best to bring a Frazzled Cafe to you.
I am a journalist / blogger and would like to write about Frazzled Cafe?
Please note however that we take the confidentiality of Frazzled Cafe meetings very seriously and ask that all attendees respect it by adhering to our Guidelines and Terms & Conditions. If you have registered to attend a Frazzled Cafe you are very welcome to do so in a non-professional context – we all get frazzled! – but we will not permit filming, recording or the approaching of attendees or facilitators for comment. It is likewise not permitted to reproduce in text or other media any of the discussions that take place in a Frazzled Cafe.
We hope that you understand that this is to ensure that everyone who attends a Frazzled Cafe is able to do so with confidence that it is a safe, non-judgemental and anonymous environment.
Will you be in all M&S stores?
I run a not-for-profit / charity with similar ideals to Frazzled Cafe – can we team up?
We salute you for your efforts! At this stage in our rollout all of our focus is on successfully establishing Frazzled Cafe within the UK, but thank you for thinking of us and we wish you great success. We believe the more discussion there is around mental health and wellbeing the better as it helps to reduce the stigma that surrounds it. It is great that you are also contributing to that!
Can our charity use M&S spaces too?
What do you mean by "Frazzled"?
As Ruby explains in ‘A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled’: “A neurobiologist might say that someone is ‘stuck in a state of “frazzle”'. They mean that, for this person, constant stress is overloading the nervous system, flooding it with cortisol and adrenaline; their attention is fixed on what's worrying them and not the job in hand, which can lead to burn-out.”
We felt it was the perfect word to describe how we all feel at times and what connects our meeting attendees.
We'll let Ruby elaborate further: